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Aurora’23-ISTE Techweek


Advanced 3D Printing Workshop
Shivani Seshadri Iyer | Staff Writer

Imagine a sci-fi movie where a herb that isn’t produced in nature is designed by technology and is 3D printed. Scriptwriters would be at a loss for words if they discover that the technology they envisioned to satisfy the imaginations of fanatics exists in real life. This was a two-day Advanced 3D Printing Workshop by IE Mechatronics in collaboration with ISTE. In 3D Printing, objects are designed on software such as Fusion 360 and Solidbox and a real-life 3D replica was printed. Such processes are additive and are added layer by layer.

Siddhant Sinha, the President of IE Mechatronics, said they would be briefing participants on parameters required while 3D Printing an object. He hoped that it would be a memorable event, a significant interaction and experience for the participants since most of them are first and second-year engineering students and don’t have much experience handling 3D printers. At the end of the workshop, each of the participants got a souvenir with the club’s logo.

The organisers started by laying the grounding for their citadel—the definition and history of 3D Printing. Different technologies in 3D Printing were also discussed, such as Fused Deposit Moulding, where a filament is heated and moulded into a 3D shape, SLS (metal powder fuses due to heat), and SLA (resin is treated with UV light, and it hardens). Applications of 3D Printing in the automobile and biomedical industries, prototyping, et cetera, were elaborated on in detail. The upper hand to using a 3D printer is that it allows one to create 3D designs, which is cost-effective, and certain raw materials can be 3D printed, among other things. Parts of a 3D printer, such as nozzle, controller board, filament, feeder board, et cetera, were shown in pictures, and their locations were shown on the printer for participants to get a practical approach.

After the presentation and discussion on the 3D printer, they designed a keychain on a 3D printing software called Ultimaker Cura. Later, 18 participants were divided into teams of two and were taken to see the printer, which had keychains kept for Printing. Slides of a 3D print farm were shown in pictures. Videos were shown on 3D Printing, followed by a Q&A session. After the workshop, every participant had a 3D-printed keychain and ISTE goodies to take home. The workshop had something to give and something to take.

Arvind Sasikumar Talk
Prakhar Dwivedi | Staff Writer

Arvind Sasikumar, an MIT alumnus, recently visited Manipal for an event organised by ISTE and E-Cell in collaboration. This event was organised to expand the thought of entrepreneurship among the students of MIT. Later, he started as a Software Development Engineer at Microsoft (Redmond, Washington, United States). After some time, he quit his job and started his own company QUINN.

QUINN is a private company that has been in the industry for some years now. The company has a B2B model, it offers a platform where businesses can post their product videos, reviews, and many more, and visitors can shop from the application, enabling clients with analytics from conversions to engagement and helping to grow their revenue. Arvind Sir spoke about his journey through college, the struggles he had been through, and then about the dream job everyone wishes for, but not being happy and then turning onto a completely different road.

Quinn wasn’t easy to start up like every other new business. It took him eight months to determine what should be done to get the thing on the right track. And now it’s a well-growing business. His talk mainly focused on forming his company and making its place in the market. He mentioned some distinctive qualities for making your business solid in the market and how risk-taking ability plays a vital role in everybody’s life. He specifically said the importance of backing the pricing of your products as the market would accept if your product is valuable, and you should not be afraid to price it accordingly.
In short, a great talk with a lot of informative knowledge was given by Arvind sir.

Aurora CTF
Krrish Manchanda | Staff Writer

MIST organised an entry-level CTF in collaboration with ISTE and BugBase to introduce new players to CTF. There were a total of 60 participations, and at the end, 3 cash prize winners were declared. The event saw progressively increasing levels of questions which were released in a period of twenty-four hours with some delay in between to keep everyone on their feet. The event was hosted on the official website of BugBase.

Blender 3D Workshop
Prakhar Dwivedi | Staff Writer

Blender is software used to model 3D objects, which has various applications in engineering, from modelling components for 3D Printing to making characters for video games. The blender workshop hosted by ISTE was a very detailed and hands-on guide for rookies to get into a blender to figure out the various components making it easier for them to delve deeper into the software and its endless applications.

The instructor made sure all the participants could implement whatever he was teaching and was very competent in his knowledge to resolve all the arising doubts the participants had. By modelling simple objects like a bed and a pillow, the instructor tapped into a lot of features of Blender. The participants also seemed to have a fun and enriching experience.

A participant working with Blender.

Cad Modelling Workshop
Ayn Shahabal | Staff Writer

IE Mechanical held a two-day workshop on the basics of CAD Designing. The workshop aimed to provide participants with a firsthand experience of working on Fusion 360, a popular computer-aided design (CAD) software. The workshop was hosted in NLH and was attended by 12 participants. The workshop began with an introduction to CAD Designing and its importance in the engineering industry.

The participants were given a brief overview of Fusion 360, its interface, and its tools. The participants then had the opportunity to follow along with a step-by-step tutorial on designing a simple part using the software. They were guided throughout the tutorial and answered any questions they had. On the second day, the participants were given a more challenging part to design, and they were encouraged to use their creativity to design a unique and functional part. They were also given tips on how to design efficiently and effectively and shared some design best practices. The participants also learned how to animate their models using Fusion 360’s animation tools.

A live demonstration was held on how to create a simple animation, and then the participants were given time to create their own animations. Overall, the workshop was successful, and the participants gained valuable experience and knowledge in CAD designing.

Capture the Flag Workshop
Deepali Vengaka | Staff Writer

A workshop was held on the 12th of February at NLH in collaboration with MIST to introduce the attendees to Bandit and Capture The Flags. Bandit is a Linux-based command line game that orients players to the basics of playing other wargames. MIST helped people better understand command tools and use their acquired knowledge to play Capture the flags. They played a few levels together, followed by a few basic questions and moved on to PicoCTF.

PicoCTF is a program built on the Capture the flagging framework created by security experts at Carnegie Mellon University. It gives access to its users to think creatively and critically to solve challenges. With PicoCTF, participants were guided about the different domains and taught how to get about a CTF. Attendees had writeups for future reference, and the process of finding answers
was discussed. Everyone who attended the workshop was asked to carry their laptops because all the activities were hands-on.

Overall the event was a massive success, with over 60 excited participants who had a great time.

The participants of the Capture the Flag workshop organised by MIST and ISTE.

CSS Frameworks Workshop
Saranga KrishnaStaff Writer

CSS frameworks are pre-made collections of code that help developers style websites quickly and easily. They offer pre-designed styles for typography, buttons, forms, navigation menus, and more, allowing developers to quickly create attractive and responsive layouts without having to start from scratch.

Some popular CSS frameworks include Bootstrap, Foundation, Bulma, Materialize, and TailwindCSS, among others. These frameworks typically come with various customisation options, and many offer additional JavaScript functionality to enhance user interactivity and functionality.

The workshop conducted as a part of Aurora tech week left the participants with knowledge of how to use, implement and take full advantage of CSS frameworks such as bootstrap and tailwind to design a unique website that stands out from websites that are designed using raw CSS and are easier to maintain and update.

“The entire workshop went smoothly. The crowd was very interactive, and it was fun teaching them. Many of them could complete the hands-on projects, and they looked very professional. The participants were delighted after the workshop and appreciated our efforts”. Says Prateek Anand, an organiser of the event.

This workshop was where every web designer found ways to turn their absurd, creative and intricate thoughts into reality and design an ‘original’ and a functional website.

A still from the CSS Frameworks workshop.

Dev Sprint
Yahsya Garg | Staff Writer

Hackathons have become increasingly popular in recent years as a way for developers and tech enthusiasts to come together and collaborate on innovative projects. One such event, the “Dev Sprint” web development hackathon, brought together participants from all over MIT to create exciting web-based solutions. This event provided a unique opportunity for developers to showcase their skills. Whether you are a seasoned developer or simply interested in the world of tech, the Dev Sprint hackathon provided a fascinating glimpse into the world of web development and innovation.

Dev Sprint was organised by ISTE with a prize pool of 10,000 Rupees awarded to the top three teams. There were two rounds in total. In the first round, teams had to replicate an image-based website within two hours. The top ten teams were moved into the second round, which was eight hours long. The second round was a little more challenging, with teams being required to create their own websites using the problem statements provided.

The event was extremely well organised, with a large number of volunteers on hand to assist with any queries. Each participating team got a goodie bag which added to the overall excitement and enthusiasm of the event. The experience was exciting and educational, complete with an adrenaline-filled environment. The hackathon was won by team SRTJ followed by team Sentinels in second spot and Last Minute Squad in third place. However, the true winners of the event were all the participants who were able to learn from the experience and walk away with new skills and knowledge. The event gave an insight into what it is like working in an environment where pressure is high and time limited.

Digital Divide
Kartikeya Vasista | Staff Writer

On the 12th of February, debate lovers across the campus gathered in a classroom to participate in the Digital Divide event. It was a parliamentary discussion about how technology affects day-to-day life. Another much-debated subject was the ethical concerns posed by new technology, not just privacy but also issues like consent, freedom of choice, and autonomy. A spirited debate about how technology has impacted various industries and aspects of daily life took place at the event. There were two preliminary rounds, one semi-final round, and one final round. With around twenty participants in six teams – three of them comprised of first years, the event lasted for around five hours.  

Sushant Shekhar, an organiser, said, “I had a great time planning and judging the competition. I was really amazed by the calibre of arguments presented by newcomers to the game! I really like hearing folks discuss the notion of consent and choice. I hope there are many more occasions like this where many people may take part and watch!”. The event was enjoyed by participants, judges and the audience alike, with all of them agreeing that it was intellectually stimulating. 

Face Detection using OpenCV
Sharad Mathur | Staff Writer

An ISTE and IOSD Manipal collaboration brought forth an exciting opportunity for students to learn the fundamentals of object detection and gain hands-on experience using OpenCV’s Python library. The Face Detection Workshop was a three-day event held on the 15th, 16th and 17th of February at NLH as part of AURORA, ISTE Manipal’s flagship event. The workshop began with an introduction to computer vision and object detection, followed by an explanation of the OpenCV library and its features. Participants were then guided through the installation and setup process for the Python environment and OpenCV library.

On the second day, the participants were guided through a project involving taking selfies automatically from their webcams through face recognition using OpenCV. With the help of the facilitators, students learned how to implement face detection algorithms using OpenCV and Python. The facilitators provided in-depth explanations of the code and answered any questions that came up during the workshop. On the final day, the ongoing project was completed, and students were helped through any errors in their code or other problems with their projects. The facilitators made sure that every participant left the workshop with a fully-working model and was confident in their understanding of OpenCV and the powers of computer vision.

Overall, the workshop was a success, with students leaving the event with a solid understanding of the fundamentals of object detection and practical experience in using OpenCV. The workshop set a great example for such events in the future.

Microcontrollers in Drones Workshop
Shivani Seshadri Iyer | Staff Writer

The frightening thing about the future is that one will always be watched. Drones help facilitate that in 4k resolution. But as with all things, drones have their benefits and drawbacks. Project Dronaid has helped the cause ‘One Flight Saves Lives’, and made the most of their abilities to improve access to healthcare and saved many lives.

Project Dronaid held a workshop on 15, 16, and 17 February 2023 on ESP-32 Microcontrollers and their importance in drone technology. They are one-of-a-kind small computers on single integrated circuits that are designed to control a specific function within a more extensive system, in this case, the drone. The process efficiently has Wi-Fi and Bluetooth and can go into the all-too-effective energy-saving mode. They are also used in smart home devices, motion detectors, et cetera.

The workshop started with the organisers explaining ESP-32 Microcontrollers to the attendees. They were later given a kit consisting of an ESP-32 Microcontroller, Breadboard, MPU 6050 Sensor, USB cables and male-to-male Jumper wires. Instructions on using every component in the kit were given, and organisers taught participants the applications of the breadboard, which is used for making connections temporarily. MPU sensor measures the angle by which the drone turns. They had to build a microcontroller using the kit. On the second day, the coding of the C-code that activates the microcontrollers on the software took 2-4 hours, and the connections for the microcontroller also took place, which extended to the third day, which also included a simulated drone flying session with the ESP-32 microcontroller that the participants had built.

This workshop had the best of all worlds: electronics, coding, and aviation. The workshop had a practical engagement and skillset which required participants to bring out their A-game. Participants were well-engaged throughout the three-day workshop and eventually comprehended the relevance of a microcontroller in a drone.

A still of the drone developed by Project Dronaid.

Neural Networks and Computer Networks Workshop
Yashya Garg | Staff Writer

The field of computer science is constantly evolving, and with it comes new advancements that can sometimes leave us feeling uncertain about their impact on our lives. There are new technologies that can revolutionise the way we live and work. That’s why the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) conducted a workshop covering some of the essential technologies computer scientists need to know about: Python, NumPy, Pandas, OpenCV, and the basics of neural networks.

A neural network is a computer system designed to learn and make predictions based on data. It’s inspired by how the human brain works, where neurons in our brain communicate to process information. The ACM workshop was designed to provide participants with a comprehensive understanding of these technologies and how they can be used in real-world applications. The three-day workshop began with members of the ACM introducing the fundamentals of Python, NumPy, and Pandas to eager participants.

The second day was even more fun when they delved into OpenCV, a popular Python library, and began exploring the basics of neural networks. Day three was the most exciting when students were introduced to Convolutional Neural Networks (CNNs). ACM brought students together to work on the final project and showed how similar projects were used in real-world applications. The workshop was a great success, and the students left feeling inspired and confident about their newly acquired skills. Students were given a chance to see how the technology they had learned could be applied to real-world problems, and by the end of three days, they were able to build their real-time face recognition system. ACM’s efforts to promote computer science education are paying off, with many participants saying this was their first experience with programming. The course was also an excellent opportunity for students to interact with one another.

Participants of the Neural Networks and Computer Networks Workshop.

UI Design Workshop
Dakh Loiya | Staff Writer

The ISTE-ADG partnership held a 3-day workshop. The workshop was created for newcomers interested in learning more about the fundamentals of UI design and web development.

The attendees were given a brief introduction to Figma on the first day of the workshop, which is a well-liked design tool for producing user interfaces and other visual designs. The students learned the fundamentals of HTML5 on the second day, including how to organise web pages using HTML tags and attributes.

The final workshop day was devoted to CSS and how to use it to improve a website’s visual appeal. Students were instructed on creating a sidebar for a website and urged to play around with the code to understand better how it functions. The organisers walked around and assisted the students with questions or concerns in creating an interactive and exciting learning environment.

Overall, the workshop was an excellent opportunity for beginners to gain practical skills and knowledge in UI design and web development. The organisers frequently asked the students questions about the different tags and attributes used in HTML, helping reinforce the learning and ensuring that the students understood the material.

Vinod Aravindakshan Talk
Siya Kothari | Staff Writer

On 20 February 2023, Vinod Aravindakshan, the founder of CareerBolt, enlightened the students about the strategies that go inside a recruiter’s mind. From his personal experience as an HR of companies like Samsung, he briefed the audience about how they can make their resumes and LinkedIn profiles more appealing. He further expanded on how a recruiter’s mind works and what makes a candidate stand out among 100-200 candidates.

The talk was followed by a Q&A session where Vinod sir also talked about CareerBolt, an HR consulting agency that helps people from core branches contact potential employers. He even acknowledged the organisers for organising such a talk for the MIT students.

“I am proud to say that the talk was a great success. The talk was well-attended, with many students eager to learn from our guest speaker’s experience and insights as a recruiter. The speaker’s expertise in the field was evident as he shared practical tips and real-world examples that resonated with the students. Overall, the experience of organising the talk was a rewarding one. It was an excellent opportunity to provide value to the students and to contribute to their professional development.” said Parv Kohli, the president of ISTE.

Whether you want a job or a start-up, Vinod sir was the perfect person to answer everyone’s doubts.

Image Credits: Manipal the Talk Network(MTTN)

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